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MURPLE

Rock Progressivo Italiano • Italy


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MURPLE was one of those bands that only made one album and then disappeared. Typically symphonic Italian progressive, as always quite inspired by classical music. On their release, this four-piece group from Rome plays a long suite divided on the two sides, based on the story of a penguin. The music is very good, with classical inspirations especially in the keyboards playing and nice guitar parts. I really don't find any bands that would make a good comparison, indeed I urge you to buy this album about the penguin MURPLE and his long strange journey. You will for sure find some very nice moments here. A CLASSIC AND FIRST QUALITY OPUS.

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Quadri Di Un'RsposizioQuadri Di Un'Rsposizio
Import
Btf 2008
Audio CD$19.01
$39.65 (used)
Io Sono MurpleIo Sono Murple
Import
Akarma 2005
Audio CD$189.26
$34.39 (used)
MurpleMurple
Import
2008
Audio CD$22.99
Lo Sono MurpleLo Sono Murple
Ams 2014
Vinyl$26.55
$30.61 (used)
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MURPLE discography


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MURPLE top albums (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

3.88 | 107 ratings
Io Sono Murple
1974
2.90 | 18 ratings
Quadri Di Un'Esposizione
2008

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MURPLE Reviews


Showing last 10 reviews only
 Io Sono Murple by MURPLE album cover Studio Album, 1974
3.88 | 107 ratings

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Io Sono Murple
Murple Rock Progressivo Italiano

Review by Tord Bremnes

4 stars Despite the lack of commersial sucsess, this 30 minute long italian masterpiece shows the exelence of the progressive rock era. This album is one of the Greatest from italy. A variated collection of themes which melts together in to a fantastic penguins tale. the story and music blends perfectly together to become a highly emotional experience. Murple allso gives you very some unekspected rythmical twists. the songs are wellcomposed and sounds challenging (as something which requiers practice) But you have heard all this before. what is it that Murple do that makes it special? The bands sound connected to the story is just perfect! you can understand the whole story by just listening to the music. there is no need for words. the synths describes the cold harsh antarctic, the call of adventure, the unatural chaotic city and Regret. the album is unfortunatly a little too short, and some parts are too long compared to the others. This allbum itself is not so inportaint when it comes to how it has affected other bands, but in how its variety and style shines upon the world makes it a creation worth 4 stars.

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 Quadri Di Un'Esposizione by MURPLE album cover Studio Album, 2008
2.90 | 18 ratings

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Quadri Di Un'Esposizione
Murple Rock Progressivo Italiano

Review by apps79
Special Collaborator Neo Prog Team

3 stars While working on a second album, Murple became aware of the fact that their label BASF wanted an album per year by the band, an exhausting asking that led to instability between the members and the final demise of the group.Most of them remained involved in the music industry as teachers, musicians or producers in the following years.As with many obscure groups, Murple came again on surface through the various reissues of their sole album and the interviews following these releases.Eventually three of the four members, Piercarlo Zanco, Mario Garbarino and Duilio Sorrenti reunited in 2007 and decided to work on a second Murple work after 33 years.This was recorded at the Grop Studio in Roma, helped by Sabrina Gagliardi on vocals and Edoardo Massimi on guitar, released in 2008 on BTF under the title ''Quadri di un'esposizione'' (''Pictures at an exhibition'').

Seems like it hasn't past a year from ''Io sono Murple'' while listening to the album.Murple are in a very good shape, up-to-date with the current technologies around Prog Rock, but overall having a very nostalgic feeling regarding their music, which is pretty romantic, sensitive but also fairly symphonic with lush, well-executed arrangements.While the tracks are not particularly long (as the whole album is less than 34 minutes long), there are plenty of changes and different moods in each, starting from retro-inspired acoustic movements and emotional, lyrical textures and reaching the territories of keyboard-based Italian Prog with some good synth and organ acrobatics and a few impressive orchestral preludes.Lots of instrumental variations with dual keyboards recall more modern bands such as TAPROBAN and LA TORRE DELL'ALCHIMISTA.The atmosphere is trully great as a whole, somewhat lowered by an average production, and the group has given huge space to its instrumental skills than to its vocal delivery.The result is a beautiful Italian Prog album, typical example of a creation by veterans of the scene, with melodic and atmospheric soundscapes.

A nice comeback of a talented group.Do not get much closer to Classic-styled Italian Prog than this, although do not expect furious interplays or hard riffs.Expect though some delicate and attractive keyboard-driven musicianship of a melodic, symphonic nature.Warmly recommended.

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 Io Sono Murple by MURPLE album cover Studio Album, 1974
3.88 | 107 ratings

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Io Sono Murple
Murple Rock Progressivo Italiano

Review by Warthur
Prog Reviewer

4 stars One album wonders (until their belated reunion in 2008) Murple put out an intriguing concept album in the form of Io Sono Murple. With minimal vocals and production values reminiscent of a slightly earlier iteration of prog, the concept album portrays the adventures of an intrepid penguin explorer who heads off to visit the human world, only to discover that humans aren't nearly as nice to visitors as penguins are. Pier Carlo Zanco is the star player here, with his command of his keyboards pushing the album above the average and making this an interesting and worthwhile release for anyone looking to explore second-tier Italian prog bands.

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 Io Sono Murple by MURPLE album cover Studio Album, 1974
3.88 | 107 ratings

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Io Sono Murple
Murple Rock Progressivo Italiano

Review by toroddfuglesteg

4 stars Some penguins provides what is close to being Rock Progressivo Italiano heaven.

Murple was a one album wonder. But they reformed again and gave us another album. This is their first album and it was released back in 1974.

It is obvious from the sound that the classical music focused bands from symphonic prog scene has been the major influences for this album. ELP and Yes springs to mind. Io Sono Murple is also divided into two suites. Both very much classical music orientated. The music ebbs and flows like a symphony. From full orchestra to pastoral pieces of piano and/or acoustic guitars. Mostly piano, though. We also get wild bursts of heavy electric guitars too to contrast the pastoral pieces.

The vocals are very good and the musicians does a great job. The two pieces here are great. In short, this is a great Rock Progressivo Italiano album well worth investigating. My sympathy for the penguins has risen to a substantial level now. Spare them some warm thoughts this Antarctic summer.

4 stars

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 Io Sono Murple by MURPLE album cover Studio Album, 1974
3.88 | 107 ratings

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Io Sono Murple
Murple Rock Progressivo Italiano

Review by 1967/ 1976

4 stars 'Io Sono Murple' (eng: 'I'm Murple') is a conmcept album based on the journey of penguin Murple. This is the story of the good lyrics.

But the music is the magical part of this concept album because the lyrics are incorporated in the music, at the same style of Genesis. But the music, what level is it? Certainly the level is high... But... I must say that I really like this latest attempt to unite Classic Music (really good) and Rock. The keyboards are excellent for this fusion. But at the same time I think that this album is not so personal because I heard other RPI albums with the same atmospheres and musical concept (not lyrics concepts). At the same time the feeling and the magic that Murple build is really important, merits of a writing that is not easy but very well developed. This, in my opinion, is not emphasized by the use of the suite structure style (winning element here), but is transformed into a winning element from the element suite. So the music becomes an expression of freedom of expression by no means easy to achieve with the formula song. The continuous transitions between melodic parts (but powerful) and aggressive parts (without melody... But not free jazz or hard rock) is another winning element in this album. This increase the magic of melodic parts without being an end in itself. All enhanced by the technical expertise of Murple, musicians above average to the media.

One defect? This: 'Io sono Murple' suffered from bad distribution by a foreign label, Basf, not particularly active in Italy. But Akerma release has, fortunately, to overcome this defect.

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 Io Sono Murple by MURPLE album cover Studio Album, 1974
3.88 | 107 ratings

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Io Sono Murple
Murple Rock Progressivo Italiano

Review by AdamHearst

3 stars This album tells the tale of a penguin named Murple... and, not being able to understand Italian, that's all i've been able to gather about the story. Usually i don't mind lyrics in languages i can't comprehend, often i even prefer it... but on this album i can't help but feel i'm missing a big part of the picture.

The music itself is blithely expressive... it carries most of the typical 'RPI' characteristics, but Murple manage to create quite a singular and light-hearted sound. Classically inspired compositions are mixed sporadically with up-tempo Jazz Rock... the musicians are all very good, but there's nothing really mind-blowing here.

There are many great segments within the roughly 35 minute span of this opus... but there are some lesser, forgettable moments as well. The album takes a long time to get going... it's rather slow moving. The intro 'Antartide' is tedious, but the next movement 'Metamorfosi' thankfully picks up the pace with some nice uptempo Jazz-influenced drumming.

The first half of this suite is generally not as good as the second in my opinion. There are too many drawn-out quiet sections for my tastes. I like this band a lot when they let loose, as on the Canterbury-esque 'Murple Rock' section. I wish they would 'rock' a little more often.

The second half begins with a classical piano piece, 'Preludio e scherzo', which is pleasant and well written but doesn't really move me emotionally. What follows are the best moments on the album: 'Tra I FilÝ' is a beautiful ballad full of wonderful lead guitar hooks, which then leads into a fabulous controlled-chaos Jazz Rock section (drummer Duilio Sorrenti's shining moment).

This album is very short; i don't think there's enough substance to recommend this to anyone other than RPI aficionados. It's good for sure, but not very consistent... and ultimately not essential material. I have a feeling Italian-speaking Prog fans would appreciate this more.

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 Io Sono Murple by MURPLE album cover Studio Album, 1974
3.88 | 107 ratings

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Io Sono Murple
Murple Rock Progressivo Italiano

Review by Mellotron Storm
Prog Reviewer

4 stars This is a concept album about the adventures of a penguin named Murple. Vocals are in Italian so I can't tell you much about it. While it shows 12 tracks on the back of the cd there really is only two just like the original LP's two side long suites.This recording is outstanding.The first song especially seems to change tempos and moods at every turn. The second track allows them to develope things a little more.

They sure don't stand in one place very long during the first track, perhaps like our penguin Murple. It opens with some spacey atmosphere for a minute then drums and organ take over. We get a calm before 3 minutes and then the song kicks into gear before 3 1/2 minutes. Nice organ ! This is great ! It settles quickly though before kicking back in at 5 1/2 minutes with guitar.This is quite moving. Organ comes ripping in a minute later as the tempo picks up. Vocals for the first time after 7 1/2 minutes and this is an emotional section too. The tempo picks up then settles after 9 1/2 minutes as piano comes in. A fuller sound with vocals 11 1/2 minutes in. I like the guitar here.Vocal melodies and a calm 14 minutes in but then here we go again to the end.

Side two opens with almost 3 minutes of impressive piano melodies and then vocals and guitar take over. Beautiful ! The tempo picks up 5 1/2 minutes in with keys and drums leading the way. It settles with guitar and vocals before 8 minutes and then organ and bass lead the way 9 1/2 minutes in. Vocals are back after 12 minutes and then it kicks back in after 14 minutes. It calms down before 16 minutes to the end. Our penguins escapade is over. Hope he's ok. Haha.

For me this is a solid 4 star record that is very well played and arranged.

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 Quadri Di Un'Esposizione by MURPLE album cover Studio Album, 2008
2.90 | 18 ratings

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Quadri Di Un'Esposizione
Murple Rock Progressivo Italiano

Review by andrea
Prog Reviewer

3 stars Murple was one of the many "one-shot bands" of Italian prog scene of the early seventies. After the release of their very good debut album "Io sono Murple" in 1974, they disappeared... until 2007, when three of the original members, Per Carlo Zanco (vocal, piano, keyboards), Duilio Sorrenti (drums, percussion) and Mario Garbarino (bass) reformed the band and, with the help of some guest musician like Sabina Gagliardi (vocals) and Edoardo Massimi (guitar), recorded a brand new album that was released by the independent label Btf in 2008. The album comes out with a good packaging and an interesting booklet where you can find the explanation of the "conceptual work"...

In 1874 took place in St. Petersburg an exhibition dedicated to the work of the Russian painter Victor Alexandrovich Hartmann. Modest Mussorgsky, who was a friend of the painter, composed his piano suite "Pictures at an Exhibition" on the emotional wave that was provoked by the paintings... Well, Murple's work is not a rock interpretation of Mussorgsky music (like EL&P's), but an original work inspired by the same paintings. On the booklet you can find the images of the paintings with a short commentary, so you can match music and images and have a "promenade" through the tracks of the album. "Quadri di un'esposizione" is a good work, although not outstanding. Sometimes vintage and modern sounds are mixed together a little bit clumsily, but the music flows away smoothly enough, track after track, during its less than 34 minutes length...

The first painting, "Promenade & Gnomus", represents a wicked dwarf wondering in a forest and a sound of spacey keyboards introduces a beautiful short symphonic track... "In the deepest dark of your wood / The meeting with that hidden being / Twisted limps spread fear...". The second scene "Promenade & il vecchio castello" is settled in Italy where a troubadour sing his song before the walls of an old medieval castle in a sad landscape... The dreamy and baroque atmosphere is enriched by female vocals and by a good instrumental break in "Seventies style"... The third scene "Tuileries" is settled in Paris where some happy children play in a garden while the music is a short and joyful instrumental led by classical guitar and piano... The fourth painting, "Bydlo", represents an heavy Polish chariot towed by oxen and here the music curiously swings from vintage sounds to definitely more "synthetic atmospheres"...

The fifth painting, "Il ballo dei pulcini", represents some dancers disguised as chicks coming out from the eggs, while the music reminds me slightly of some works of Rond˛ Veneziano and Lucio Battisti. Next paintings "Samuel Goldenberg & Schmuyle" represent the meeting of two antithetic men and the music is built upon a "dialog" between piano and synthesizers. "Promenade & Limoges" represents a noisy scene in the market square of Limoges and here pop sounds are intertwined with a short drum solo and a "vintage organ flavour"... The eight scene, "Catacombae", depicts a visit to the catacombs of Paris and the music features a church choir and a good gothic atmosphere... The ninth painting represents "Baba Yaga", a bizarre witch, and the music inspired by this image in my opinion is by far the weakest track on the album, definitively too "poppish" (some melodic lines reminds me of a song of Zucchero, "Solo seduto sun panchina del porto..."). Tha last painting, "La grande porta di Kiev & Promenade", represents a project for a gate in city of Kiev while the music reminds me of Le Orme's "VeritÓ nascoste" and features strings on a marching beat and a delicate piano outro...

On the whole, although non essential, this album should be interesting for Italianprog lovers...

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 Quadri Di Un'Esposizione by MURPLE album cover Studio Album, 2008
2.90 | 18 ratings

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Quadri Di Un'Esposizione
Murple Rock Progressivo Italiano

Review by progbaby

4 stars I am not much of a reviewer but I will give this album my best shot. I suspect readers already know that Murple was one of many one-shot italian bands in the 70's to release a fantastic album and then disappear for lack of money and/or interest. After 35 years, they are back again with the original lineup. It's hard for me to not continually compare their classic 73 album to this one but I have listened to this one several times with an open mind and must say that it has grown to be an excellent album to my ears. My 4-star rating may confuse others or what have you but I have my reasons for it:

1. They seem to have continued where they left off in 1973. They're still using the tasty analog key sound of the 70's.

2. There's enough classical influences in the music and it does not seem they have tried to go with the neo sound of the plastic keyboard. Kudos to them for this. There are some terrific el-piano pieces albeit short.

3. I do not hear repititous droning drum beats that seem to be a fixture in today's music. Instead, the drummer seems to be experimenting either with high hat sections, snares, etc.... All too often in today's music, it almost sounds like many bands employ a drum machine or a drummer who's afraid to wander outside of the 4/4 | bass drum boom boom boom | bass drum boom boom boom.... The drums do not sound digital on this album. Another reason I prefer the 70's sound is due to hearing more experimentation with the drummer

4. Some really nice choral sections in a few pieces.

5. The bass player plays some really nice melody lines.

6. There's some really nice relaxing melodic music on this album including a classic accoustical guitar piece.

Yes the album is under 34 minutes long but I've never had a problem with that. I strongly feel that I'd rather have a 33 minute album of quality material thruought rather than a 79 minute album that has 50- 60 minutes of filler on it.

Murple does not sound uninspired or like they came back to the studio just for business. Rather I feel they decided to pick up where they left off with Io sono murple. That album (as does this album) employs quiet sections as well as bombastic sections sprinkled with nice keyboards/drums and bass.

In my opinion, one of the much better reunion albums from 70's italian prog acts. To my ears, maybe the best. I recall being disappointed with Metamorfosi's paradiso and still feel that way and each additional listen to that one confirms my disappointment as Inferno was just so much better. This one is different. After several listens, it sounds better and better and I have to say parts of this album are in check with Io Sono Murple. You could do worse to play Io Sono Murple and this album together. They're really both like part 1 and part 2 and the songs could actually be interchangable.

Great job Murple. Welcome back. I can only hope that you don't wait another 35 years. But if you never release another album again, I'm grateful you all came back in the studio to release this.

Thank you!!!

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 Quadri Di Un'Esposizione by MURPLE album cover Studio Album, 2008
2.90 | 18 ratings

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Quadri Di Un'Esposizione
Murple Rock Progressivo Italiano

Review by ZowieZiggy
Prog Reviewer

2 stars HI GUYS, WE ARE IN 2008.

I mentioned in my review of their first release (from .1974) that the band reunited and produced a second album almost thirty five years later. With the original line-up!

There were several reunions like this one before, and even if a few led to some interesting work, the majority was rather flat. I would say that this one is in the middle of the road (but on the lower side though).

The band sounds awkward during the opening of this album and vocals are frankly below average. The second of these Promenade sounds as a church song in the first half and doesn't really thrill me. It turns out as an old ELP track later on.

It seems as if the band didn't realize that we are into the CD era and that more time is available by now when you release an album. Murple released an extremely short album (thirty-four minutes) and each song (ten in total) is rather short as well. Now, considering the relative weakness of this work, it was maybe a good idea to keep it short.

Intrumental parts are the best ones (Tuileries, Bydlo) but highlights are really scarce (if only there are). The popish Il Ballo Dei Pulcini is what I would have liked the band to avoid. The mix of some classical theme with these beats are quite a useless exercise.

I would have expected a much better album from these people who released a great recording back then. Most of the music featured here sounds passionless; as if it were only business as usual for the band although that they didn't produced any album between 74 and 2008. They should have been more enthusiastic, dynamic, full of creativity and emotion.

Instead, they produced some uninspired music like Promenade & Limoges. This album sounds as a sub-sub-par ELP at times. And I still wait a moment of glory in here. And talking about glory, I was not expecting another church piece under the form of Catacombae. Press next, unfortunately.

Murple released an excellent album with Io Sono and even if this work is not bad, they should have cared less with this release. They would have remained an excellent reference in the genre. I am afraid that it won't the case with this one.

I am found of genuine Italian symphonic music. This album just doesn't fulfil my prerequisites. Two stars.

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